Lewis Hamilton wins the German Prix for Mercedes

Last Updated July 22 2018, 16:10Formula 1
Lewis Hamilton celebrates a stunning win
Lewis Hamilton celebrates a stunning win

Lewis Hamilton claimed one of the most remarkable victories of his Formula One career after his championship rival Sebastian Vettel crashed out from the lead in the German Grand Prix.

The podium

  • 1st Lewis Hamilton
  • 2nd Valtteri Bottas
  • 3rd Kimi Raikkonen

In brief

Lewis Hamilton claimed one of the most remarkable victories of his Formula One career after his championship rival Sebastian Vettel crashed out from the lead in the German Grand Prix.

Hamilton started only 14th after a mechanical failure in qualifying and was 12/1 to win the race with Sky Bet, but took the chequered flag at Hockenheim following a dramatic conclusion sparked by a rain shower, and Vettel's jaw-dropping crash.

Both Hamilton's Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen pitted for new tyres after the safety car was deployed following Vettel's costly accident.

Hamilton stayed on track to assume the lead, and when the race was back under way with 10 laps to run, the Englishman held off team-mate Bottas to seal a famous victory.

Incredibly, the British driver is now 17 points ahead of Vettel after striking a devastating championship blow on his rival's home turf.

Full classifications

Leading Positions after Race (67 Laps): 1 Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1hr 32mins 29.845secs, 2 Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 1:32:34.380, 3 Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 1:32:36.577, 4 Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 1:32:37.499, 5 Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault 1:32:56.454, 6 Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas F1 1:32:58.716, 7 Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India 1:33:00.401, 8 Esteban Ocon (Fra) Force India 1:33:01.595, 9 Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Sauber-Ferrari 1:33:02.207, 10 Brendon Hartley (Nzl) Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:33:04.042, 11 Kevin Magnussen (Den) Haas F1 1:33:04.764, 12 Carlos Sainz (Spa) Renault 1:33:12.914, 13 Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) McLaren 1:33:16.462, 14 Pierre Gasly (Fra) Scuderia Toro Rosso at 1 Lap, 15 Charles Leclerc (Mon) Sauber-Ferrari at 1 Lap, 16 Fernando Alonso (Spa) McLaren at 2 Laps

Not Classified: 17 Lance Stroll (Can) Williams 53 Laps completed, 18 Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 51 Laps completed, 19 Sergey Sirotkin (Rus) Williams 51 Laps completed, 20 Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull 27 Laps completed

Fastest Lap: Lewis Hamilton 1min 15.545secs on Lap 66

Race Report

Lewis Hamilton claimed one of the most remarkable victories of his Formula One career after his championship rival Sebastian Vettel crashed out from the lead of the German Grand Prix and he's now 8/13 with Sky Bet to win the Drivers' Championship.

Hamilton started only 14th after a mechanical failure in qualifying, but took the chequered flag at Hockenheim following a dramatic conclusion sparked by a rain shower, and Vettel's jaw-dropping crash.

Both Hamilton's Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen pitted for new tyres after the safety car was deployed following Vettel's costly accident.

Hamilton stayed on track to assume the lead, and when the race was back under way with 10 laps to run, the Englishman held off team-mate Bottas to seal a famous victory and afterwards thanked God for the win.

Incredibly, the British driver is now 17 points ahead of Vettel after striking a devastating championship blow on his rival's home turf.

Pole-sitter Vettel had been in control of his home race, and looked destined to increase his title advantage over Hamilton before a late rain shower ensured a spectacular end.

The Ferrari driver lost control of his car in the slippery stadium section towards the end of the lap, and slid across the gravel and into the tyre barriers.

Vettel was furious with his mistake, bashing both hands on the steering wheel. "F*** sake, f*** sake," he yelled over the radio. "Sorry, guys. S***."

The four-time champion got out of his Ferrari cockpit, and kicked the gravel in utter frustration.

To make matters even worse for Vettel, his potentially championship-deciding error, gifted the lead to Hamilton, who was running in fourth place.

Bottas and Raikkonen, both on older rubber, had to pit for new tyres, but Hamilton - despite being told to stop too, only before changing his mind at the last moment - stayed out on track.

The race resumed with just 10 laps to run, and Mercedes held their breath as Hamilton and Bottas went wheel-to-wheel for the victory.

But, at the team's home race, Mercedes called off the fight: "Valtteri, this is James (Vowles - chief strategist). Please hold position."

The Finnish driver duly obliged, and, despite the threat of a second rain shower, Hamilton crossed the line 4.5 seconds clear of his team-mate to move clear of Vettel in their battle for the championship.

Raikkonen completed the podium places, while Max Verstappen finished fourth ahead of the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg.

"Miracles do happen," Hamilton's race engineer Pete Bonnington said to the Brit after he took the win.

"What an amazing job from you guys," Hamilton replied. "Thank you so much. Love conquers all."

Reaction

Lewis Hamilton: "It is very difficult from that position and highly unlikely but you have always got to believe.

"I did a long prayer before the race and I wanted to stay collected and calm. I am so grateful. I kept pushing, kept believing and it happens. A big thanks to God.

"I hadn't thought about the championship. It was so tough out there. Conditions were perfect because when it rained, I knew that I would be in a good position."

World Championship Standings after German Grand Prix

Drivers: 1 Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 188pts, 2 Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 171, 3 Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 131, 4 Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 122, 5 Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull 106, 6 Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 105, 7 Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault 52, 8 Fernando Alonso (Spa) McLaren 40, 9 Kevin Magnussen (Den) Haas F1 39, 10 Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India 30, 11 Esteban Ocon (Fra) Force India 29, 12 Carlos Sainz (Spa) Renault 28, 13 Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas F1 20, 14 Pierre Gasly (Fra) Scuderia Toro Rosso 18, 15 Charles Leclerc (Mon) Sauber-Ferrari 13, 16 Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) McLaren 8, 17 Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Sauber-Ferrari 5, 18 Lance Stroll (Can) Williams 4, 19 Brendon Hartley (Nzl) Scuderia Toro Rosso 2, 20 Sergey Sirotkin (Rus) Williams 0

Manufacturers: 1 Mercedes GP 310pts, 2 Ferrari 302, 3 Red Bull 211, 4 Renault 80, 5 Force India 59, 6 Haas F1 59, 7 McLaren 48, 8 Scuderia Toro Rosso 20, 9 Sauber-Ferrari 18, 10 Williams 4

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